Cheap Geek: Game Prices

I promised myself that I would never spend $60 on a video game ever again.

When Final Fantasy 13 came out, I got it on launch day from Target. They were offering a $10 gift card with the purchase of the game, thus offsetting the price slightly, even if I still had to hand over that $60 up front. Overall, I liked the game; the combat was great, but the storytelling wasn’t very good (the foundations of a good story were there, but the execution sucked).

Months later, I purchased Mass Effect 2 on sale for $24 on Steam. I loved it. Mass Effect 2 is one of the best Video Games I have ever played. What’s more, simply by waiting 6 months before purchasing it, I spent less than half what I did on Final Fantasy 13. This experience of spending less money on a game, and liking it more than the $60 game I bought previously has happened to me many times before. Mass Effect 2 was the last straw. I promised myself I’d never spend $60 on a game again. Given that nearly all video games drop in price over time, there’s no reason to spend $60 on one as long as I’m willing to wait for a better price.

However, that also means I’m not going to play StarCraft II for a while. I have loved every game Blizzard has made for the past decade and a half, and while I have no doubt that StarCraft II is a phenomenal game, I refuse to pay $60 for it. That’s just over my limit.

In the meantime, I installed the original StarCraft on my Ubuntu partition under Wine. It runs flawlessly, and even after all these years it’s still a good game. More importantly, playing the old game also helps to quell my desire for the new game. I highly recommend the old StarCraft if you can’t play the new one for whatever reason.


3 thoughts on “Cheap Geek: Game Prices

  1. Nice blog! I see you’re using Ubuntu as well. I’m still using version 10.04 and have become very comfortable with it. Quake III Arena seems to work fine under Wine, but Expression Web and Quicken don’t for some reason. I’ve tried a WinXP installation in VirtualBox, but my USB ports aren’t recognized. I’m going to try VMWare next.

    1. I’ve had problems getting USB to work under VirtualBox too. If you don’t get your stuff to work under VMware, you could try Crossover Linux (by CodeWeavers). They’re sort of a for-profit fork of the Wine project. Or, you could just ditch Quicken and Expression Web all together and use GnuCash and/or (which is what I use; though I don’t run a business), and use KompoZer for web development. Depending on your budget, you could also look into migrating over to Squarespace. From what I understand, their online web development tools are exceptional. Ideally, I’d do everything I could online, that way I’d never need to worry about what OS I was running. That doesn’t always workout, though…

      Interesting side note: Quake III actually has a Linux installer that Id Software put out. As I recall, it was a little cumbersome to get it to work unless you actually purchased the official Linux version of Quake. Back when you couldn’t run the desktop while installing Nvidia drivers (had to effectively reboot into the command line), I’d sometimes use Quake III as part of my tests to make sure I’d installed the driver correctly. It’s good to know I don’t have to do any of that anymore.

  2. I have GnuCash and Kompozer installed on my system and would gladly make the transition to these programs, but I’ve simply become too accustom to Quicken and Expression Web to want to take on another learning curve – especially Kompozer (Microsoft decommissioned FrontPage and Expression Web is the replacement – very similar to Dreamweaver and intended to compete with it directly). GnuCash might be OK, but Expression Web has many features that I’ve become accustom to that Kompozer doesn’t have. The ability to easily create dynamic web templates and link them to all the pages in the site with just a couple mouse clicks is just one example.

    On an unrelated note, my computer started rebooting spontaneously and generally acting up a few days ago. It reached the point where it wouldn’t even POST. I really thought it was FUBAR’ed, but it turned out to be a fried video card. Right now, I’m using a spare card to keep it going. It’s a pretty old card and I can’t run 3D games of any kind or view videos in full screen. Interestingly, I found an identical PNY Nvida 256mb 3D video card on Ebay for about $30 bucks. That’ll get my system back firing on all cylinders and should keep it functioning till I can finally upgrade my system.

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